The Prayer Cross or Serenity Cross can be any cross shape; the main feature is the set of prayer words or biblical verses inscribed or printed on the cross. (See also Crosses with lettering.)
Often the text is so small that it's difficult to read; especially when the cross is a hand-held cross. For some people, having a Prayer Cross is like having a lucky charm. Prayer Crosses are found in church gift-shops as well as secular shops that also sell lucky seven and angel pendants.
To have some sanctifying words on a cross gives it more 'energy'. It doesn't matter if the text is illegible and it doesn't matter what the words say. It's sufficient that words are there.
However, there is no doubt that for many people, reading such a cross gives an immense source of inner comfort and hope. There's something about a cross with lettering that makes you want to read what is printed. Therefore the words are usually simple yet lead to a profound meaning. It is a cross; a cross adorned with a bonus feature.
There are countless different prayer words used and here are a few of the more popular ones:
God, grant me
to accept the things I cannot change,
the courage to change the things I can,
Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive
us our trespasses,
As we forgive
Lead us not
us from evil.
is the kingdom,
and the glory,
The Lord's my Shepherd, I'll not want.
he makes me down to lie
in pastures green; he leadeth me
the quiet waters by.
My soul he doth restore again;
and me to walk doth make
within the paths of righteousness,
even for his own Name's sake.
Yea, though I walk in death's dark vale,
yet will I fear no ill;
for thou art with me; and thy rod
and staff my comfort still.
My table thou hast furnished
in presence of my foes;
my head thou dost with oil anoint,
and my cup overflows.
Goodness and mercy all my life
shall surely follow me;
and in God's house forevermore
my dwelling place shall be.
Love is patient,
love is kind.
It does not envy,
it does not boast,
it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking,
it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not
delight in evil
with the truth.
It always protects,
Love never fails.